This has to be the most blatant example of hypocrisy since the pharisees started praying in public. How a man who wasn't even openly and democratically elected to his position of power in his own country and who insists on interfering in churches abroad where they had absolutely no say in his consecration can come out with a statement like this is beyond me.


Rowan Williams, the archbishop of Canterbury, has issued a broadside against the coalition government, claiming it is forcing through "radical policies for which no one voted".

The comment comes in an editorial he has written as guest editor of this week's New Statesman magazine. Williams says the "anxiety and anger" felt by voters is a result of the coalition's failure to expose its policies to "proper public argument".

He writes: "Government badly needs to hear just how much plain fear there is around such questions at present."

Ye gods!!!



  1. The Guardian article is very interesting, actually. And I really like what the Chief Rabbi had to say at the very end.

    NOT, mind you, that I think religion can pick up the proper role of government when that has been abdicated…

  2. Rowan’s sounding off is a distraction. Imagine! Me and the blood-crazed ferret on the same page – sort of:

    This is displacement therapy, designed to take Dr Williams’s mind off the shocking crisis of morale in the Church of England and the Anglican Communion.

    Here’s the reality. The Anglican Communion has disintegrated on Rowan Williams’s watch, partly thanks to his habit of saying one thing to fundamentalist Africans and quite another to liberal Americans.

    The ferret doesn’t like us liberal Americans, either, but he’s nailed Rowan article for what it is. Why is anyone surprised when Rowan’s is shown, once again, to be hypercritical?

    I hope my comment is serious enough for you, MadPriest.

  3. If you actually read what I write instead of reading what you imagine I might write you would see that I was not demanding that you were serious yesterday. Quite the opposite in fact.

  4. Actually, I read the exchange between you and me again later, and I found it to be a hilarious example of two people talking past each other. It wasn’t so much that I didn’t read what you said, but that I didn’t understand what you said.

    Is your head sore today?

  5. I dunno, the guy goes from academic to bishop to archbishop to ++Cantur with nary a real job or life experience. His opinion has always been requested and published. Which leads to a question: is it hypocritical not to have a damn clue?

    You all really need to change the selection process. It does not mean you need to disestablish, just change the criteria to include no less than 51% of career in parish ministry.


  6. I don’t think there would be any need to insist on anything. All we have to do is revert to the ancient and orthodox practice of all the people of the church electing their bishops by public acclamation and the chances of academics and business managers getting the top jobs would become extremely remote.

  7. Jim, I’m not inside Rowan’s head, but I don’t think it’s an academic head-in-the-clouds thing that causes him to speak and act as he does. As I see it, Rowan’s moves are calculated to further what’s become the goal of his life, which is to hold the Anglican Communion together at all costs – the Anglican Communion which has already fallen apart.

  8. Alas, electing bishops is not a cure-all (or even a cure-much). We do over here, first by representatives (maybe that is the flaw) and then by acclamation when the candidate has already been chosen. And you don’t have to look far to see what that has gotten us. There are many excellent bishops here (as I am sure there are in England), but the dreadfuls have just as bad (I would say worse) as any around, but for lack of serious power (another small advantage of the US system). If the ABC had been up for a popular vote, y’all would probably have gotten either another Lord Carey, because that is how the people that would be driven to vote would vote, or Bushybrows, because he looks so good on paper and has been proclaimed the next ABC since his student days. As usual, you have to find someone that doesn’t want the job but is competent and then rush him through orders (but another Ambrose is unlikely and he had some major flaws anyhow).
    wv: cormans either the House of or Roger

  9. Well not completely dead but definitely ailing in the face of an insane world. shall I write to him again, I wonder? Despite the bleedin’ obvious he does make some good points.

  10. theme, once Rowan is seen as a hypocrite, it’s hard to give weight to much of anything the he says, although I suspect that he’s mostly right about the Big Society plan, which will mean big cuts in programs for those most in need.

    Of course, what do I know? I’m a foreigner.

  11. I would disagree, very respectfully, with Mimi and, quite haughtily and with a kick-and-spit, with Damian “666” Thompson;

    It’s not just the archepiscopal equivalent of “Look over there! A dancing bear!” It’s also coming, I think quite tellingly, as the idea of disestablishment is being bandied about with great seriousness. I think Rowan’s making an effort to make it look like having him – and by extension, the Lords Spiritual – in Parliament is a real protection for the people.

  12. I am happier for Cantuar having written this than outraged at his inconsistency.

    Cameron has reacted as if’d been hurt claiming that Cantuar is ‘factually wrong’. So I’m going with Cantuar on this one.

    Yes it is about taking sides. It is when you’re throwing stones -even if it’s on glass ceilings, as both you and Cantuar could be shown to be doing.


  13. Agreed, LAB. But I rarely blog on secular political matters. I deliberately went for the inclusive church angle which I am more qualified to do. Others, after preferment in the church, will, no doubt, offer up their praises to the Archbishop.

  14. I think you need to look back over my blog, LAB. I am an out and out socialist who voted for Arthur Scargill rather than the right wing Tony Blair Labour Party. I was sacked from my job as priest in the Church of England for viciously championing minority rights. Any one of my readers has more integrity than every member of the British Labour Party put together. They walk the walk because our revolution has already happened.

  15. I have read some of your blog material, MP. I am aware of some of your opinions -and some of the opinions among the most frequent posters here as well. That is not my point.

    The Archbishop of Canterbury has echoed, in a polite and o so lovely voice, what the revolutionaries are screaming -and writing with graffiti- on the streets. He’s got my support on this one.

    As for the unreasonable demands he has placed on churches beyond his jurisdiction, and his inability and/or unwillingness to clearly and openly stand with justice and inclusion for all in the church and not just hetero or clossetted non-hetero… well, yes. A pox on his house for each of those.

    He probably tells awful jokes too.

    But, on this one, he’s got my support. At the end, the object of these remarks of his (which as you know will make him extremely popular in Coalition-dazed-and-confused England) are the less powerful among you being screwed over by ‘austerity’ policies and even through un-democratic means.


  16. forgot to clearly identify the popular in Coalition-dazed-and-confused England’ bit as sarcasm.

  17. I find this post funny and truthful. Well, who doesn’t have hypocrisy? I think everyone of us has a bit of it. But there are really people who are obviously hypocrites and I wouldn’t have to point my finger at all.